Skip to main content
Most King County offices will be closed on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24, 2017, for the Thanksgiving holiday.  
King County logo

News

King County Executive
Dow Constantine


Constantine honors Seattle Pacific University with Executive's Award for Community Preparedness

Summary

A culture of preparedness and an advanced emergency alert system is praised by the Executive as a model for readiness and response for the school that was shocked by a deadly on-campus shooting.

Story

2015 Executive's Award for Community Preparedness - King County

Seattle Pacific University accepted the 2015 Executive's Award for Community Preparedness on Sept. 3, 2015. From left: King County Council Chair Larry Phillips, King County Executive Dow Constantine, SPU President Daniel J. Martin, and SPU Senior Vice President for Planning and Administration Don Mortenson

Fifteen months after a deadly shooting on the campus of Seattle Pacific University, King County Executive Dow Constantine today recognized the faculty, staff, and students for their community-wide commitment to emergency preparedness and response.

"The very first responders in a disaster are, more often than not, neighbors helping neighbors," said Executive Constantine. "President Martin and his staff have worked for many years to build a campus-wide culture of preparedness, one dedicated to the safety of everyone who walks these halls."

The Executive presented Seattle Pacific University with his 2015 Executive's Award for Community Preparedness at a ceremony held Thursday at the Queen Anne Hill campus of the 125-year-old Christian institution of higher learning.

SPU's response to the 2014 shooting on campus included individual acts of heroism that made worldwide news; most notably those of student Jon Meis, who risked his life to protect others.

Perhaps less known, however, is the university's "whole community" approach to preparedness that began many years ago. The strategy includes the organization and intensive training of staff volunteers and students who work with the university's Office of Safety and Security to respond to any type of emergency. The system's backbone is a state-of-the art Rapid Electronic Communication System that allows students, faculty and staff to communicate with each other on multiple platforms. The campus-wide "SPU-Alert" notification system enables near-instant dissemination of critical messaging by email, text, and at scores of electronic message boards that adorn walls and doorways throughout the campus.

Accepting the award on behalf of the entire campus community was SPU President Daniel J. Martin.

"While we did not seek out this award, we are humbled by the recognition," said Martin. "The SPU community places a high importance on emergency planning and preparedness, and we continue to work on updating and improving our response in a time of crisis. We do have an extraordinary community here at SPU, and this award goes to the many hardworking staff and faculty members who are dedicated to making our campus as safe as possible."

This is the fifth annual Executive's Award for Community Preparedness, given each fall in recognition of outstanding efforts made by communities to prepare for and respond to emergencies. The award promotes safer communities, strengthening King County as a whole.

For tips and information on emergency preparedness, visit www.kingcounty.gov/prepare.


Quotes

The very first responders in a disaster are, more often than not, neighbors helping neighbors. President Martin and his staff have worked for many years to build a campus-wide culture of preparedness, one dedicated to the safety of everyone who walks these halls.

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

While we did not seek out this award, we are humbled by the recognition. The SPU community places a high importance on emergency planning and preparedness, and we continue to work on updating and improving our response in a time of crisis. We do have an extraordinary community here at SPU, and this award goes to the many hardworking staff and faculty members who are dedicated to making our campus as safe as possible.

Daniel J. Martin, Seattle Pacific University president

Video

For more information

Barnaby Dow, Office of Emergency Management, 206-205-4070

King County Executive
Dow Constantine
Dow constantine portrait

Read the Executive's biography